RDO’s Enforcement team has recently issued warnings on a number of suspected fraudulent operations and is urging members and consumers to report any contact received from companies such as Blue Chip or Mason, Goodwin & Lisco.
Blue Chip was one of the bogus resale companies on the Costa del Sol closed down by Spanish Police in 2010, yet they seem to have resurfaced and started cold-calling owners, offering a corporate buyer for their timeshare or holiday club membership. Victims are asked to pay a ‘temporary retainer’ fee of 1200 euros upfront, something which is illegal under the new EU Timeshare Directive.
Another bogus holiday club which still seems to be operating is Designer Way Vacation Club (DWVC), part of the Timelinx Group and the main holiday club sold by Incentive Leisure Group, a marketer which allegedly ceased trading in January.
Mason, Goodwin & Lisco presents itself as a timeshare consultancy based in London, although in fact it operates from Tenerife. It pretends to offer legal advice to owners who were misrepresented or suffered the miss-selling of their timeshares, requesting an upfront payment to help them surrender their deeds. This is believed to be a scam and owners are urged not to deal with them.
The final warning is about ITRA, the International Timeshare Refund Action, and its marketer Owners Action, which have nothing to do with RDO despite “promoting” RDO´s Enforcement’s work on their website. ITRA’s TV ad, which invites owners to join a class action when in fact they are primarily being sold a holiday club membership, was deemed misleading and banned in January. The ads are still on the internet, though, and consumers should be wary of the promises they make.
Anybody who has had dealings with any of the above mentioned companies mentioned or who suspects they are victims of fraud should email firstname.lastname@example.org.